Dissertation > Literature > Chinese Literature > The body of literature reviews and research > Novel > New Novel

Dealing with Death as Living

Author WuZhiLing
Tutor TangChenGuang
School Hunan Normal University
Course Contemporary Chinese Literature
Keywords Funeral Culture Cultural Artistic Conception Value and Function
CLC I207.42
Type Master's thesis
Year 2007
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The funeral culture is a whole organism in Chinese old culture. The textobserves and expounds the description of funeral custom in the new periodfictions from the view of culture anthropology and folklore in order toproclaim the masses’ mentality as well as social transition and reflectChinese traditional culture in the aspect of literature through the window offuneral custom. Creative psychology of Chinese contemporary authors isinvestigated thoroughly in the text which includes three parts: theintroduction, the main body and the conclusion.Introduction: This part analyses the trait of primitive thought andstructure of funeral custom. It’s thought that funeral culture has closerelations with Chinese literature and after we examine the description offuneral custom in the literary composition of the former sixty-year newChinese literature, the characteristics are discovered as following: theauthors unfavorably reviewed funeral custom, of which, the descriptionbear too much political tint and there existed the lack of a useful insight intoits cultural implication, social subjects, functions and ritual systems.Chapter one: New Chinese literature was influenced potentially as wellas secondly by funeral custom, with which, social subjects and culturalartistic conception are described faithfully. Firstly, in psychological sense,Chinese contemporary authors have revealed the mass psychology andnational spirit by whole description on honorable burials and theircharacteristic. Secondly, in aesthetic sense, the authors support a reasonablehorizon of constructing some kind of benign and healthy death culture bydescribing the ceremony over the dead. Thirdly, in the ethical aspect, theexiling and stripping description of filial piety, which is the nucleus core offuneral ethics, shows profoundly considerate about traditional culture thedrawbacks of the age.Chapter two: After a breakthrough in the modem authors’ single anglefrom the enlightening standpoint, the new period authors’ description of funeral custom seems to be multivariant, from simplicity to deepgoing.Also, the authors expound as well as affirm the function of socialconcordance, cultural communication, emotional consoling and ethicalinstruction. They reflect on the funeral and burial ethics at the same time.Chapter three: The funeral and burial custom descriptions of the newperiod authors’ have deep historic consciousness and intense critical spirit,and the authors observed the heavy funeral culture burden and showed theenlightening intention. They also affirm the funeral and burial custom’ssocial value and function. As times goes on, the masses reconstruct thetraditional ceremony. In the texts the authors showed the culture deviation ofits transition and gave emphasis on additional significance of funeral andburial custom, which is, constructing social network.Conclusion: The new period authors, who bear whole new ideas offuneral psychology, funeral cultural implications and funeral functions,surpassed traditional creation paradigm of theory of value as well as theoryof knowledge in descriptions of funeral custom. Some items, which areauthors’ expatiating upon the meaning of funeral custom and metaphysicalthinking of death, are helpful for us to think the meaning of building healthyviews of life in the hard onward course between the funeral and modemcivilization. There exists rich value in the interact expatiating betweenfuneral culture and contemporary literature.

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